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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
December 15, 2005

Fact Sheet: Protecting New Orleans From Future Flooding

      In Focus: Hurricane Relief

Stronger Flood And Storm Protection Than Ever Before

President Bush Is Working To Make The New Orleans Levee System Better And Stronger Than Ever Before And Is Helping To Restore The Surrounding Wetlands To Provide Additional Flood And Storm Protection. The President is focused on the safety and security of the citizens of the Gulf Coast and is committed to providing the resources necessary for them to return home and rebuild their lives.

The additional levee protections the Administration is proposing - including armoring, closing the three interior canals, and installing state-of-the-art pump stations - will address the main causes of the catastrophic flooding during Hurricane Katrina.

Restoring Previous Levels Of Protection - $1.6 Billion

The President's $17 Billion Reallocation Package, Currently Pending In Congress, Includes $1.6 Billion For The U.S. Army Corps Of Engineers.

Before the start of next hurricane season, the existing Federal levee system will have been restored, including:

Providing Better And Stronger Protection - An Additional $1.5 Billion

Today, Federal Coordinator For Gulf Coast Rebuilding Donald Powell Announced New Actions To Provide Additional Safety And Security Measures In Order To Address The Large-Scale, Catastrophic Effects Of Another Hurricane Katrina. By providing safety and security for the residents of New Orleans, these actions will promote a favorable climate for reinvestment and new economic enterprise.

The additional protections include:

These actions will address the main causes of the flooding during Katrina, namely the failure of the existing system and the flooding associated with the interior canals.

All of these actions can be substantially completed within three years and will provide greater flood and storm protection for the most densely populated areas of Greater New Orleans.

Planning for Future Protection

The President understands the urgent desire to go home and resettle, which is why his Administration is working quickly to implement the engineered levee and floodwall improvements while exploring options to provide additional flood and storm protection measures.

Comprehensive flood and storm protection is a combination of engineered infrastructure and non-engineered solutions. Even with the highest constructed levees or barriers, it would be impossible to guarantee protection against every conceivable storm.

Any comprehensive flood and storm protection plan must be based on all relevant facts and the best available science, including information from local and state initiatives, universities, professional organizations, and private sector entities.

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